“An atomic bomb exploded over Nagasaki on August 9, 1945, three days after the explosion of the first atomic bomb over Hiroshima… the B-29 bomber “Bockscar” reached the sky over Kokura on the morning of August 9, but abandoned the primary target because of smoke cover and changed course for Nagasaki, the secondary target, where it dropped the atomic bomb at 11:02 a.m.” – The Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum
History of the Bomb
The atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki weighed 4.5 tons and the energy emission it gave off was equivalent to 21kilotons of TNT. The energy released was 50% blast, 35% heat rays, and 15% radiation. These three factors led to the immense damage and loss of lives in Nagasaki. On August 9, 1945, the population of Nagasaki was around 240,000 people. After the bomb dropped, 73,000 people were killed and over 74,000 additional people were injured.
In April 1966, almost 51 years after the atomic bomb exploded over Nagasaki, the Atomic Bomb Museum opened.
The museum displays artifacts of the damage caused by the atomic bombing such as the contorted legs of a water tank from a middle school (pictured left), rosaries from priests found in the rubble, melted glass from bottles that stuck together due to the high heat, a helmet with the remains of a skull, and a clock, which stopped precisely when the bomb dropped at 11:02 a.m. (pictured right). The museum goes on to describe of the process of creating and using an atomic bomb; a video room shows two videos: one a documentary and the other a cartoon; the Q&A corner features video recordings of atomic bomb survivors as the recall what happened on that day; and finally, right before you exit the museum, there is an exhibition discussing working towards a world free of nuclear weapons. The exhibit points out all of the countries engaging in creating and testing nuclear weapons, the damage that nuclear weapons have caused, and the damage that major international conflicts have created around the world. The exhibit also features several videos of people who were affected in the past 50-years by nuclear testing in their respective countries.
Directions, Hours, and Admission:
From the JR Nagasaki Station: Take tram #1 or #3. Get off at Hamaguchi-machi and follow the signs (five minute walk).
Hours: Everyday from 08:30 – 17:30 (from May to August closes at 18:30). Closed December 29-31 yearly.
Admission: ¥200 Adults; ¥100 students (This is the most current pricing information)